Dr Chase Nuñez


Research interests


I study the ecology of communities in a changing world. My work focuses on the processes that connect animals and plants, and how those processes respond to, and abide by, disturbance. Results uncover how intensifying disturbances like climate change and human land-use are interacting to affect long-term change in the biodiversity and function of our ecosystems.
My approach integrates natural history (Am. J. of Primatology, 2015) and observational data (Poulsen et al. 2018, Conservation Biology) with manipulative experiments (Annals of Botany, Plants, 2018) to more finely examine mechanisms that drive ecological patterns. This involves developing (Wildlife Biology, 2019) and testing (Ecosphere, 2019) new technologies, leveraging big-data resources (geedataextract, 2019), and developing models to forecast ecosystem composition and function (Ecological Monographs 2019). This multifaceted approach conceptually and statistically embraces that species responses to the environment are meaningfully mitigated by their interactions with one another. You can read more about these ideas on my website.

Short CV


  • 2019–present: Postdoc; German Centre for Integrative Biodiversity Research.
  • 2014–2019: PhD; Duke University, USA.
  • 2013–2014: Field Manager; Kakamega Forest, Kenya.
  • 2009–2013: AB, AB; University of California, Davis, USA.

Non-iDiv publications


Nuñez CL,Froese G, Beirne C, Meier A, Ossman M, Dipenthal J, McCarthy J, Kim S, Poulsen J, Stronger together: comparing and integrating camera trap, visual, and dung survey data for ecological inference in tropical forest mammal communities, Accepted, Ecosphere. 2019

Beirne C, Nuñez CL, Baldino M, Kim S, Knorr J, Masseloux J, Minich T, Poulsen JR, Rundel C, Wright JP, Jin K, Xiao A, Mbamy W, Obiang GN, Nkoghe T, Estimation Of Gut Passage Times Of Wild, Free Roaming Forest Elephants, Accepted, Wildlife Biology. 2019.

Beirne C, Miao Z, Nuñez CL, Medjibe VP, Saatchi S, White L.J.T., and Poulsen J.R.; Landscape-level validation of allometric relationships used to estimate carbon stock reveals marked spatial heterogeneity in model bias driven by soil type in Afrotropical forests, Ecological Applications. 2019. DOI: 10.1002/eap.1987

Clark JS, Nuñez CL, Tomasek B,Food webs built on unreliable foundations: Masting and the movement, demographic storage, and diet breadth of consumers, Ecological Monographs 2019. DOI: 10.1002/ecm.1381

Nuñez CL, Clark JS, Poulsen JR, Clark C, Low-Intensity Logging and Hunting have Long-Term Effects on Seed Dispersal but not Fecundity in Afrotropical Forests. Annals of Botany, Plants. 2018. DOI: 10.1093/aobpla/ply074

Poulsen JR, Rosin C, Nuñez CL, Meier A, Mills E, Koerner S, Blanchard E, Callejas J, Moore S, Sowers M.The Ecological Consequences of Forest Elephant Decline for Afrotropical Forests.Conservation Biology. 2018. DOI:10.1111/cobi.13035

Nuñez CL, Grote MN, Wechsler MS, Allen-Blevins C, and Hinde KJ. Offspring of Primiparous Mothers Do Not Experience Higher Mortality or Poorer Growth: Revisiting the Conventional Wisdom with Archival Records of Rhesus Macaques (Macaca mulatta). American Journal of Primatology. 2015.DOI:10.1002/ajp.22426.

iDiv publications


Beirne, C., Miao, Z., Nunez, C. L., Medjibe, V. P., Saatchi, S., White, L. J. T., Poulsen, J. R.

(2019): Landscape-level validation of allometric relationships for carbon stock estimation reveals bias driven by soil type. Ecological Applications 29(8)

Nuñez, C. L., Froese, G., Meier, A. C., Beirne, C., Depenthal, J., Kim, S., Mbélé, A. E., Nordseth, A., Poulsen, J. R.

(2019): Stronger together: comparing and integrating camera trap, visual, and dung survey data in tropical forest communities. Ecosphere 10(12)
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Deutscher Platz 5e
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+49 341 9733244
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Leipzig University

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